FAO leader. Aim of the Study; to reflect on the effects of the faith of parents on their children. To honour and encourage those who are parents in the group, to raise the profile of children in the church and to provoke those who are not parents (yet) to think about their influence on the next generation. (Even if you haven’t got many parents in your group it’s good to honour those in church who are and encourage people to honour their own parents!)
1. What is the best thing about being part of your biological family?
This woman is only mentioned twice in scripture, briefly and in passing both times. It’s easy to miss her altogether, but she is someone whose faith has a profound impact on the early church and might inspire us to think about the impact of our own faith in the long run.
READ ACTS 16.1-3 & 2 TIM 1.5
2. What facts can we learn about Eunice from these verses? (E.g. her home, culture, marriage, family, faith)
3. Sometimes those with Christian families can take their heritage for granted; what was taught, modelled & prayed in their home. In what ways would you say your parent’s faith (or lack of it) has influenced you?
4. What are the wider, long term effects on the early church of the way Eunice’s faith has affected her son? What principles might that teach us about investment in children & those who do it?
5. If there are people in the group who are parents – what do the rest of you see them teaching/ modelling to their children that you would like to affirm? What do they find most challenging about being a Christian parent? Ask them how you might support them AS a parent. (If there are no parents in your group consider other parents in the church & make a plan to tell them/ encourage them)
6 A. Who else in the group/ church do you see having a really positive effect on children and young people? In what way?
B. How might we all contribute to the growth and development of the children & young people? What might your contribution be?
2. Eunice was a Hellenistic (Greek speaking Jew), married to a gentile – thus probably looked down on by a more orthodox Jewish community. She seems to have come to faith early in the church’s history but her ‘mixed race’ family is interesting given what Timothy goes on to do for God!
4. Timothy was a mighty man of God – even at a young age. He travelled with Paul, church planting and supporting his ministry – in fact he was left to trouble shoot & lead the church in Ephesus, a centre of pagan worship. He also provided friendship and encouragement to the apostle Paul, becoming his ‘spiritual son’ – and was one of those whose encouragement comforted & kept him going right to the end of his life.
© Ruth Perrin 2008. Last revised on 1 December 2008
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Cloud of Witnesses is a series of Bible studies on the men and women of scripture. You'll find everyone from Gideon and Andrew through to Tamar and Tabitha.
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Ruth Perrin, the author, is on staff at King's Church Durham and holds an MA in Theology and Ministry.
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